Here are the welcome messages from
December 2000

12/5/00 December 5, 2000
12/11/00 December 11, 2000
12/18/00 December 18, 2000
December 5, 2000

I've put together a list of scriptures that refer to salvation. I've been doing a study on salvation since the Lord opened my eyes to the fact that my beliefs about salvation were things I'd learned from teachers and pastors and not the Lord. The list is here.

I enjoyed having my oldest son visit this last week. Actually, he's the reason I'm a little late getting this uploaded this week. He's been helping me customize a program that helps me with the scrip fund raiser I do for the band. My life is going to be sooo much easier with that program. It also will make it easier to pass the fund raiser on to someone else when I am done in June!

Now that my son is leaving I have to get serious about a few things. I have to start making Christmas cookies. My husband takes them to school (he's a teacher) and gives them to the office folks. They like that and whenever he needs something he's more likely to get help. Hold the phone! If I'm the one making the cookies...how come he's the one that gets the benefits?? Oh, what I'd give to have a wife! ;-)

I belong to a few mailing lists for Bible studies, prophecy, and other similar things. I got one the other day that blessed my socks off!

The past few weeks have been strange for me. For the first time in probably 20 years I've not wanted to go to church. I've been frustrated about not being able to find a church that allows God to run the service.

Anyway, the email was confirmation of what has been happening. It was addressed to, "The Remnant Who Would rather die of thirst than drink from the cup of mediocrity." It was speaking to my heart! It ended with, "To those who have been disappointed by circumstances. To those who have seen fallen humanity in leadership. To those who would rather die of thirst than drink from the cup of mediocrity. It is time to return to the shores of fallen humanity with the Gospel message of restoration. It is time we plunge in with both feet and proclaim to this world that Jesus really cares about our destiny. It is time to heed his word and step out in the boldness of resurrection life and touch the lives of fallen humanity with hope and life."

I thought I was alone in how I felt. God is soooooo GOOD! He knows when we need confirmation that we are not crazy. He knows when we need support. He knows every little thing that we need. He cares. He REALLY REALLY CARES!

Well, that's all I'm writing for now. I'm already behind schedule in getting this online. I'll get right to the Bible study. See you next week!

Link to the 12/5/00 Bible study.

December 11, 2000

I think I am more behind this year in getting ready for Christmas than I've ever been. I just started decorating last night. I finished addressing my Christmas cards yesterday. I still have to finish shopping for the ones that need packages mailed to them. I've got a ton of Christmas cookies I have to make by Friday morning.

I had to hang around listening for the doorbell all day Friday and Saturday. The scrip delivery, which is about $5,000 worth this week, never arrived. Normally it is here by noon on Fridays. If I don't hear the doorbell ring then I don't get the delivery that day. I had grocery shopping I needed to do and I couldn't leave. This is not a good thing!

I'm playing Christmas music now. I didn't want to play any last week because it just reminded me how far behind I am. I've decided to enjoy thinking about Christmas no matter what. After all, it isn't about cookies, or presents, or decorations. This is the time of year we are to focus on Jesus.

I love it when I hear Christmas music that sings of Jesus on secular radio stations. People that don't think about Jesus the rest of the year have nativities displayed in their homes. People who don't believe in God decorate with angels, bells, candles, and other things that point to Jesus!

Let's pray that this be the year that these things settle into people's brains and begin to fester. Let's pray that they begin to feel uncomfortable with the way things have always been. Let's pray that they begin to be consumed with the desire to find out more about the Jesus of Christmas. Let's pray that seeds planted begin to grow until fruit is produced. Yes, let THIS be the year!

How do you feel about going to church? Do you begin looking forward to the Sunday service on Fridays? Do you jump out of bed on Sunday mornings in joyous anticipation? Do you hate to go out of town on the weekends because it causes you to miss church? If not, why not?

If God was allowed to run the services then you would feel that way. You would be touched by Him and, once that happens, you are not the same. Once you have tasted God then there is no substitute. There is not one man-made church service that can create the excitement, the power, the electrically charged atmosphere that prevails in a God-made church service.

It is time that the people get hungry for more. It is time that we cry out, "Is that all there is?" Church is not about entertaining the people. It is not about what seems good. It is not about doing something because everyone else has done it that way. It is about finding out what God wants. What songs does He want us to sing? What does He want us to pray? What does He want to teach us?

What if He desires us to praise Him the entire service? What if He desires us to weep in repentance? What if He wants us to dance in celebration of His love? If He wants any of those things to happen in a church service, will the leadership of the church allow it to happen?

If you feel God weeping over traditions of men, then weep with Him! If you feel God calling you to speak out, then ask Him what words to use and use them! If you feel God asking you to continue praising Him after the praise service is over, keep praising Him!

The time is now to seek God's will! What does He want you to be doing? Are you doing it?

Keep in mind that God is perfectly capable of communicating with us. His hands are not tied by what has been printed in the Bible. He has more to tell us. He has things to say that are personal to you. He calls you by your name. He speaks about things happening in your life. He has answers to your questions. He is speaking to you. Listen!

Link to the 12/11/00 Bible study.

December 18, 2000

Oops, I just realized I never changed the "new Bible study date" when I updated this last week. I hope nobody came, looked at the old date, and left again thinking I missed a week! Oh, my, when I get too busy I forget important details!

I was very busy last week. I finally got the "have to's" done, but didn't have any time left for the "should do's" and absolutely never got around to the "want to's!"

I am trying to take things one day at a time and trying to stay cool and calm about everything. If something doesn't work out the way it should I try to say, "Oh well!" rather than running around trying to come up with another solution. My blood pressure has been high lately and my "fix things" attitude may be a contributing factor. Hey, there aren't too many things that are all that important! It is important to set priorities. I have to set priorities and then rearrange them on an ongoing basis as things change and as new things get added!

God knows the things that are most important. He knows the things that need to be done. If we don't keep asking Him then we will be busy busy busy doing things that, in the long run, make absolutely no difference at all!!!

Oh, dear, my arms are getting sore. I got a flu shot today in one arm and a Hepatitis A booster in the other. I feel like I was in a fight!

I probably won't be updating this next week. I'm not sure what will be going on next week. I'm taking a week off from doing the scrip then and so might be gone or involved in some big project that I can't do because of the scrip schedule I normally have. (Only 23 more weeks and I'll be passing it on to my replacement!! Hooray!!)

I'm tired, too. The wind was howling last night! It probably was blowing as hard as it was a few years ago when most of our trees blew over. The only difference back then was it had rained for three days before the wind blew and the tree roots let go. Our patio chairs took off. The shed door was banging. I had to take my wind chimes down. I could hear it whistling through the sliding door. I asked God to help me sleep and He did. After that, I only woke up when I would hear something crash.

Have a blessed Christmas! Remember why we celebrate Christmas! Don't get caught up in the commercialized version. When you see a Christmas candle, think about Jesus who is the Light of the world. When you see the red and green decorations think about the red of the blood that Jesus spilled for you and the green that represents your growth in your relationship with God. When you see a Christmas angel, imagine what the shepherds saw that first Christmas morning. When you see Christmas presents think about the greatest present there ever was....the present that Jesus gave us when he died so that we might live!

Link to the 12/18/00 Bible study.

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